Latest Korean Plastic Surgery Target: Teens

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Latest Korean Plastic Surgery Target:

Up to now, the surge in South Korean plastic surgery has been led by women in their twenties, but that seems to be changing. A new prime growth segment in the Korean cosmetic surgery market is quickly emerging: adolescent female teens.

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A survey conducted by e-Seoul and reported by the JoongAng Daily revealed that 41% of teenagers interviewed were "willing to have plastic surgery for beauty," a percentage 10% higher than those interviewed in their twenties, 20% higher than those in their thirties, and nearly 30% higer than those forties and older.

Not all of these teens are in high school. Even middle school students at age 15-16 are now opting for facial plastic surgery, a trend noted at cosmetic centers throughout Seoul.

Several factors seem to be helping along the change: idol-worship, desperate parents, and social media pressure.


For one, Korean teens no longer feel embarrassed by or reluctant to have plastic surgery, an attitude encouraged by their mass media K-pop idols who now openly flaunt their own cosmetic work (one popular girl group claimed its members had so far undergone 27 procedures).

Parents exert an equally strong, if surprising, influence.

A survey of 250 Korean mothers conducted by Dove, a personal care company, revealed that one in four mothers suggested to their teenage child that he or she undergo cosmetic surgery, firm in the belief that appearance is a major factor in determining a child's future successes in business and romance.

Finally, the Internet's countless Korean beauty forums, message boards, and dating sites can make a big impact on impressionable teens and even more formative children by exposing them to "lookism," the practice of quick discrimination based entirely on personal appearance.

Since facial bone development is still ongoing during adolescence, the most popular procedure among this younger group is double eyelid surgery.

APSG Comment: And don't forget the marketing. From television to radio to magazines to billboards to newspapers to buses and more, it's inescapable and relentless.

Once the teen market has been conquered, next up comes the little kiddies if not the infants still in utero.

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